Jan. 6 committee issues subpoenas to 5 House Republicans

Jan. 6 committee issues subpoenas to 5 House Republicans

Panel lawmakers spent months weighing whether to subpoena their Republican counterparts, whether they had the constitutional right to do so, and debating whether they wanted to set such a precedent.

And with the hearings less than a month away, the panel has a ticking clock to get all the information it can.

“The Special Committee has learned that several of our colleagues have information relevant to our investigation into the January 6 attack and the events leading up to it,” said the committee’s chairman, Democratic Rep. Bennie Thompson of Mississippi. in a statement. “Before we hold our hearings next month, we would like to give members the opportunity to voluntarily discuss these matters with the committee.”

“Regrettably, those receiving subpoenas today have refused, and we are compelled to take this step to ensure the committee uncovers facts about January 6,” he continued. “We urge our colleagues to obey the law, do their patriotic duty, and cooperate in our investigations, as hundreds of other Witnesses have done.”

The committee has scheduled the affidavits for members of Congress for late May.

CNN has reached out to the five congressmen for comment.

In its first letter to McCarthy in January, the panel made it clear that it asked him about his communications with former President Donald Trump, White House staffers and others in the week after the attack dated 6 this time.”

The committee also wanted to understand how McCarthy’s public statements had changed over time from critical to Trump’s defense since the attack, and questioned whether Trump had pressured him to change his tone when the two met in late January 2021 met.

The Jan. 6 committee is finalizing the witness list and issues ahead of the high-stakes hearings in June

Since the panel’s letter to McCarthy, new audio recordings revealed that the minority leader had considered asking Trump to resign in the days after the Jan. 6 riot. Audio also revealed that McCarthy told Republican lawmakers in a private conference call that Trump admitted to bearing some responsibility for the deadly attack.

The panel first reached out to Jordan, one of Trump’s staunchest allies on Capitol Hill, in December to learn more about the communications he had on Jan. 6 with Trump and with Trump allies who spoke in the days before War Room of the Willard Hotel were stationed to attack.

Jordan and Trump spoke on the phone on the morning of Jan. 6, 2021, while Trump was at the White House residence, according to White House call recordings held by the panel, first reported by CNN. Since Jordan first admitted that he spoke on the phone with Trump that day, the Ohio Republican and Trump loyalist has waved questions about it or been inconsistent in his responses.

Jordan was also previously identified as one of the lawmakers who sent a text message to then-White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, which the committee has in its possession. The message, which Jordan forwarded to Meadows on Jan. 5, 2021, outlined a legal theory that then-Vice President Mike Pence had the authority to oppose certification of the 2020 election.

Jordan was selected by McCarthy as one of five GOP members in the Jan. 6 committee back in July, but House Speaker Nancy Pelosi opposed McCarthy’s selection of Jordan along with Indiana GOP Rep. Jim Banks for saying so , their appointments could affect the “integrity of the investigation.” Pelosi’s decision caused McCarthy to withdraw all five of his members, further worsening the willingness between the two parties to work together, and prompted Pelosi to select GOP Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming and Adam Kinzinger of Illinois as members of the panel.

Perry was the first lawmaker the committee asked to volunteer because he played a key role in trying to help Trump subvert the 2020 election. Text messages obtained by CNN that emerged after the panel’s initial letter have filled significant gaps regarding the role Perry played on almost every occasion in the scheme to reverse or delay election 2020 certification.

Text messages that Meadows selectively provided to the committee show that Perry was pushing for the country’s top intelligence official to investigate baseless conspiracy theories and was working to replace the acting US attorney general with an acolyte willing to carry out Trump’s orders .

“From an Intel friend: DNI must direct the NSA to immediately seize international communications related to Dominion and begin searching,” Perry wrote to Meadows on November 12, 2020, just five days after Joe Biden’s election was called had been.

In the text, which had not previously been reported, Perry Meadows appeared to urge getting John Ratcliffe, then Director of National Intelligence, to order the National Security Agency to investigate disproved claims that Dominion voting machines had been hacked by China be.

A recent court filing also revealed how Perry played a key role in strategizing with Trump allies to throw out electoral votes in states Trump had lost.

In testimony released in April, former Trump White House adviser Cassidy Hutchinson told House investigators about Perry’s role in White House strategy meetings.

“Mr. Perry’s one that immediately comes to mind when I remember him being physically there and then pushing back,” Hutchinson said, describing how the Pennsylvania Republican clashed with Trump’s White House counsel over whether the Plan for states to submit an alternative list of voters was legally sound.

A text dated November 21, 2020 reveals that Meadows even went through Perry to connect with local lawmakers in his state.

“Can you send me the number of the speaker and the head of the PA legislature. POTUS wants to chat with you,” Meadows wrote to Perry.

The texts also reveal that Perry acted as an intermediary between Meadows and Justice Department attorney Jeffrey Clark, a relatively obscure official who emerged as a central figure in Trump’s campaign after the former president nearly killed him days before the US Capitol riot appointed acting Attorney General.

The messages make a direct link between Perry, Clark and the Trump-led effort in the White House to enlist the Justice Department to help overthrow the election.

Last year, the Senate recognized Perry for his role in promoting Trump’s voter fraud conspiracies.

Text messages held by the panel show that Perry texted Meadows multiple times to request that the conversation be moved to the encrypted messaging app Signal or to alert Meadows to a message he was sending on the encrypted messaging app platform sent.

Such a move could put the exchange beyond the reach of the committee, since Signal does not collect or store user data, making it more difficult to share that information with outside entities, including law enforcement and congressional investigators, even under subpoena.

The panel reached out to Biggs earlier this month to discuss his attendance at White House and remote planning meetings on “various aspects of planning for Jan. 6.”

In seeking Biggs’ voluntary cooperation, the committee said it wanted to “understand exactly” what he knew before the Jan. 6 violence, “about the purposes, planning and expectations for the march on the Capitol.”

Biggs also communicated with Meadows about efforts to convince state legislatures that the 2020 election was stolen and sought her help in attempting to annul the election, according to notices held by the committee.

Brooks caught the committee’s attention after revealing that Trump had repeatedly asked him to campaign for the 2020 election to be annulled and Biden removed from office.

This story was updated Thursday with additional developments.

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